As if popcorn and pancakes queues weren’t enough already, there’s a new line that has been forming over the summer in Tokyo: cupcakes, straight from New York City. 

Somehow, cupcakes never fully took off in Tokyo, despite our favorite cupcake truck (and now shop), and the plethora of baked sweets to choose from in this city. Even though the cupcake trend has now disappeared in the rest of the world (perhaps making space for Cronuts?), we still think there is nothing more enjoyable than taking a big bite into a freshly baked cake covered with buttercream frosting.

NYC-famed Magnolia Bakery, which actually owes its popularity to the Sex and the City TV series, has made its move overseas, opening up a location in Omotesando last June. The pastel-hued confectionary shop features large windows revealing the hardworking bakers back in the kitchen. If you try to snap a photo of the bakers in action, good luck amidst the enthusiastic cupcake fanatics in line.

The recipes thankfully follow the original ones (and not adapted to Japan), and the menu presents the same flavors: classic vanilla and chocolate, along with speciality twists such as red velvet, devil’s food, coconut, lemon, caramel and carrot, just to name a few. The shop also sells full cakes, and a selection of aprons, recipe books, and accessories adorning the Magnolia Bakery logo.

We loved the classic vanilla cupcake with buttercream frosting, but we can’t help wondering if the size is smaller than back in NYC. No news on how it’s been received by the Japanese public so far (it really is overwhelmingly sweet, as opposed to delicately flavored Japanese sweets), but judging by the long lines, we think it’s here to stay. They’ve also just announced that they will open earlier at 10 am on weekends to serve muffins, so get there while they’re still hot!

Magnolia Bakery, Omotesando

More Information:
Access: 5-10-1 GYRE B1F, Jingumae Shibuya-ku Tokyo
Tel: 03 6450 5800
Hours: M-F 11am-8pm; Sat-Sun 10am-8pm

-Vivian Morelli